Fight Over Medicaid Expansion Intensifies In Virginia, Other States

The battle for the future of Medicaid in Virginia is expected to heat up, with both sides of the divide paying close attention to a proposal to expand the program through the state budget. 

The Washington Post: Hundreds Cram Into Va. Senate Hearing On Medicaid Expansion Through State Budget
Virginia’s on-again, off-again special session got rolling again Tuesday, as hundreds of lobbyists and activists on opposite sides of the state’s Medicaid battle crammed into a Senate hearing on whether to expand the program through the state budget. The hearing was the first sign of life from the Senate since last week, when the chamber went home one day into the special budget session, leaving the House and its two-year, $96 billion spending plan hanging (Vozzella, 4/1).

The Richmond Times-Dispatch: Medicaid Expansion Battle To Heat Up
The stage is set for a battle on two fronts in the General Assembly next week over expanding health insurance to hundreds of thousands of uninsured Virginians. The Senate Finance Committee will meet Monday morning to act on the state budget proposed by Gov. Terry McAuliffe last week with a two-year pilot to expand Virginia’s Medicaid program, and likely will substitute its own private insurance marketplace as an alternative. The Medicaid Innovation and Reform Commission will meet that afternoon for the first time this year to resume its effort to accelerate cost-saving changes to the state Medicaid program as a step toward possible expansion of health benefits for up to 400,000 uninsured Virginians (Martz and Nolan, 4/2).

Modern Healthcare: States Seek Contested Medicaid Alternatives, Cuts
Proposals from conservative-led states looking to expand their Medicaid coverage in alternative ways have prompted worries among healthcare providers and patient advocates that proposed changes may mean some benefits are discontinued (Dickson, 4/1).

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